Friday, May 11, 2012

May Gardening and Maurice Sendak

Time for a garden update- in mid May the garden really gets going, many different flowers are blooming, as well as the excitement of getting the veggies going.

I love the bright pink flowers of Dianthus, a very easy to grow perennial , I love planting perennials, they might require a little more care than annuals, but you get more bang for your buck since they grow back year to year.

I planted four more this year, this dianthus below is especially pretty with it's white edges.

Every year I look forward to this Azalea blooming, sometimes I think it is like getting to see a friend that comes to visit once a year, such a treat.  Welcome back pretty orange blossoms.  You can read my Azalea and Lavender post  to see this plant last year as well.

One of my favorite things is following the garden year after year.  Oregon has many beautiful Azaleas and Rhododendrons I am hoping to get a chance to visit the Japanese Gardens and Rhododendron Gardens this spring while every thing is in bloom.

The Lavender is in full bloom, with the bees happily buzzing away, if you want bees in your garden plant Lavender, it draws in so many different bees.  I will let the bees have their fun, but this year when the blossoms die down, I have quite a bit of repair work to do to my Lavender patch, and I will probably replant a good portion of them.

This week the sun has just been wonderful, we are expecting temperatures in the high 80's this weekend, which is a little crazy for May, but I love the warm weather and sunshine.  This week I took advantage of the good weather and got my peppers planted.  I love planting lots of Jalapenos for one of my summer favorites- Poppers, I also plant lots of bell peppers, we love them for sausage and and beef dishes, as well as for stuffing, and one of my hubby's favorites- green pepper and egg sandwiches.

The swiss chard is ready to pick, and will be on our dinner plates this weekend, I just love this bright neon pink as well as the orange and yellow stems, so pretty.

Radishes are doing well, I only planted a small pot, I will replant them again after they are harvested, we love radish and cream cheese sandwiches, radishes were the first thing I planted as a child, they grow so quickly, it is a fun one for kids to grow.

I thought I would give Peas a try this year, they are planted in barrels, I mixed both bush and pole varieties, it will be interesting to see how these do.

I got them in a little late, but they are starting to make their way up the bamboo.

Here are the rest of the seeds I will be planting- lots of Zinnias including a very pretty Lime Green and Purple variety, some Bachelor Buttons, California Poppies, and Bells of Ireland.  I will be planting a few varieties of Zucchini, a golden variety, a new Lime Green variety (I love chartreuse and lime green so I was excited to see a zucchini in this color, I look forward to seeing how it does), as well as the standard variety.  We always grow Blue Lake 47 Bush Green Beans, this year I will also be growing a bush bean called Purple Queen, as well as some Lima Beans.  I also plant a small pot full of corn, I do not have a spare bed for a good size corn patch but I still like to watch corn grow and think it is fun to have my mini corn patch.  I have also planted pots of tomatoes throughout the garden, some yellow pear and Sungold cherry sized tomatoes which do so well every year, as well as a few heirlooms that I am trying this year, Brandywine, Mortgage Lifter, and Saratoga.  I planted One Early Girl and still need to pick up a Roma or two.  I am really looking forward to my garden this year.

This past week - May 8th, was a sad day in children's literature as Maurice Sendak passed away.  I grew up with Maurice Sendak's books and wonderful drawings, his books are some of my most favorite.  Where The Wild Things Are, my, I must have read this story hundreds of times as a child, I could so relate to Max, when he yelled to his mother "I'll Eat You Up!" after his mischief filled day, and was sent to his room.  I was often sent to my room for one reason or another and also had quite a rich imagination, so this book was right up my alley.  I would highly recommend this book for any children's library.

Little Bear is also one of my favorites, and was illustrated by Sendak. I hadn't read much of Little Bear until my children were little, we also enjoyed the Little Bear cartoon based on this book series, it was a favorite show of ours when the kids were toddlers.  Little Bear stories are so sweet, again a highly recommended book series.

Lastly- a mini book set that I remember reading at the Library as a child, and was so happy to add to my library, I have mentioned this book set before, but it is such a favorite of mine it is worth mentioning again- Maurice Sendak's Nutshell Library, with its four little books, Pierre a cautionary tale about a naughty boy who always said " I don't care", One Was johnny A Counting Book, Alligators All Around an alphabet book, and Chicken Soup With Rice A Book of Months (my children memorized this book month by moth in  their kindergarten) I love how tiny this book set is, I have always thought it would make the best stocking stuffer or a wonderful tiny little gift.  Maurice Sendak willed be missed and definitely remembered.

You can read more about these great books through my Amazon links below.

This Mother's Days Weekend I hope to spend plenty of time in the garden, as well as enjoy some nice meals with the family.  I wish you all a Happy Mother's Day!

Linking to:


  1. I didn't realize that he illustrated Little Bear. Now I need to look at my book. Little Bear is the reason I call my kids Brother Bear and Sister Bear. Sister Bear, my oldest, was given a Little Bear from my dad. She was his Little Bear until her brother was born then she became Sister Bear. Ah, Maurice, you will be missed.

  2. I love your orange azalea, April. I've been carrying around an image in my mind for years of a border with orange and pale pink azaleas, but have never been able to find any in those colors around here. You sure do manage to squeeze in a lot of goodies in your garden. It is remarkable! I'll have to show this post to my son who loves to garden but has a small backyard. Love Little Bear too! I still have a copy, even though my baby is going to be 26!

  3. Your garden looks lovely! I look forward to seeing more of your gardening posts. The radish & cream cheese sandwich sounds amazing! Have you posted that recipe?


  4. Thanks everyone for all of your comments! Here is a link to my recipe for the radish sandwiches we all love, as well as a few other tea sandwiches we enjoy.



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